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Top 10 Horror Remakes of the 21st Century

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Horror fans often times groan at the prospect of another remake. It’s certainly become a trend to take a movie franchise with an established following and remake it for today’s audiences. Detractors of remakes often see them as a quick cash grab that will damage the reputation of their beloved favorites.

Defenders of the remake will cite that some of the best horror movies are actually remakes. Movies such as The Thing (1982) and The Fly (1986) come to mind as remakes that surpassed the originals. These are an easy go-to when naming favorite horror remakes.

Horror remakes became a huge trend starting in the 21st century. There have been so many in the last 17 years that if someone were to ask a group of people their favorite horror remakes of the 21st century, you’d get an assortment of answers. Here is a Top 10 list of our favorites.

10. Friday the 13th (2009)

If this were a list of the “Top First 25 Minutes of Horror Remakes” then Friday the 13th might run away with the top spot. The first 25 minutes of Friday the 13th almost plays as its own crazy mini-movie. Other than the insane opening, Friday the 13th doesn’t bring anything new to the series. Taking plenty of nods and elements from the original series, it knows what works and sticks to it. In this case, that’s a good thing.

9. My Bloody Valentine 3D (2009)

My Bloody Valentine’s best attribute is that it does not take itself too seriously. It knows exactly what it wants to be and works it to perfection. The dialogue is cheesy, the effects are gimmicky, and the kills are absurd. Most of all, it’s just a bloody good time.

8. Piranha 3D (2010)

Piranha 3D is another exhibition in not taking yourself too seriously. Everything is delivered in excess including gore, beach bodies, and wacky performances. A movie that is so filled with glee you can imagine the cast having a blast making it. And what a cast it is. Everyone from Eli Roth to Christopher Lloyd shows up for this joyous horror comedy.

7. Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Zack Snyder’s Dawn of the Dead pays respect to the original film while ramping up the carnage. It takes a page out of 28 Days Later book by making the zombies incredibly fast. It also features one of the best opening scenes in a horror movie. With no context we get a young girl attacking her neighbors, killing the husband. The wife is able to escape to the outside, only to realize the whole world is going to hell.

6. Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake had big shoes to fill if it were to match the intensity of the original. While it didn’t quite reach the heights of the original it still made for intense thrill ride, mostly in thanks to R. Lee Ermey. We all remember Ermey’s sergeant from Full Metal Jacket. Imagine that character but even more sadistic. A scene where Ermey demands that a tormented teen shoot him has the tension bursting through our skin.

5. The Hills Have Eyes (2006)

Alexandre Aja’s second entry on our list (Piranha 3D) is very different than the first. There are not many laughs in the remake of Wes Craven’s 1977 original. Brutal visuals and a breakneck pace makes this horror remake stand out. Some even say it is a step above the original. The Hills Have Eyes not only brings the horror goods, but also has great subtext on the nature of man and what they will do when pushed to their breaking point.

4. Let Me In (2010)

Let Me In is a remake of the 2008 Swedish film Let the Right One In. With just two years between the two, it is the shortest time between original and remake on our list. Let Me In is similar to the original, which in this case is a good thing. Focusing on the relationship between the two leads, we get an elegant story of childhood, friendship, and love while still providing plenty of thrills.

3. The Crazies (2010) 

The Crazies is an incredibly tense film about a small town gone mad. It works in similar ways to classic horror films such as Invasion of the Body Snatchers and The Thing, placing you in a scenario where you’re not sure whom you can trust. The monster can be your neighbor, your best friend, or even yourself and you wouldn’t know it until it’s too late. It also boasts the scariest scene featuring a baseball field you’ll ever see.

2. The Ring (2002)

The oldest movie on our list is also one of the best. The Ring is a remake of the 1998 Japanese film Ringu. Shades of gray and black make up most of the film’s color palette. That and what seems to be a never-ending rainstorm create a somber sense of dread throughout the entire movie. The Ring’s unique atmosphere is what makes it so effective. It’s an atmosphere that gives viewers a great anxiety until it’s finally released through some of movie’s splendid scares.

1. Evil Dead (2013)

Remember what I said earlier about it being a good thing to not take yourself too seriously? Well forget about that for Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead. Evil Dead takes away the humor that made the original series so great and replaces it with an incredible spectacle of gore-filled insanity. This includes a finale where blood literally rains from the sky. It shares some of the simple premise of the original but forms its own originality through its unique style. Evil Dead is truly one of the great horror movies of the 21st century.

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Vampire Hunter D: The Series Gets Writer For Pilot Episode

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It’s been a little while since we’ve heard news about “Vampire Hunter D: The Series”, the CG-animated series based on Hideyuki Kikuchi’s titular character. However, some new news broke today over at ANN as they’ve reported that Brandon Easton, who is writing the scripts for new Vampire Hunter D comics, has been tapped by Unified Pictures to write the pilot for the series. The pilot will be based on Kikuchi’s “Mysterious Journey to the North Sea” storylines, which make up the 7th and 8th titles in the book series. Unified is making this series in conjunction with Digital Frontier, the Japanese animation studio behind the CG Resident Evil titles.

Easton told the site, “I’ve had to manage the expectations of three entities: the creator Hideyuki Kikuchi, the producers at Digital Frontier and Unified Pictures, and ultimately myself. This means that you have to find new and exciting ways of telling a story that has a set of concrete rules that have been fully established by the novels.

Meanwhile, the studio has also announced that Ryan Benjamin is taking over as the artist and colorist on the Vampire Hunter D: Message From Mars series with Richard Friend inking the issues.

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Watching A Quiet Place’s John Krasinski Get Scared by Freddy on Ellen Will Brighten Your Day

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I was just researching the new Platinum Dunes horror-thriller A Quiet Place and stumbled across this video. It features the film’s writer-director and star John Krasinski getting scared by a man dressed as Freddy Krueger on “Ellen.”

It’s as much fun as it sounds, and I’m sure it will make your day. It sure as hell just brightened mine.

Give it a watch below, and then let us know what you think!

John Krasinski directs the film, which will be the opening night entry at this year’s SXSW festival in Austin, TX. Emily Blunt stars alongside Krasinski, Noah Jupe, and Millicent Simmonds.

A Quiet Place will then open wide on April 6.

Synopsis:
In the modern horror thriller A Quiet Place, a family of four must navigate their lives in silence after mysterious creatures that hunt by sound threatens their survival. If they hear you, they hunt you.

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Interview: Director Jeff Burr Revisits Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III

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Director Jeff Burr was gracious enough to give us here at Dread Central a few minutes of his time to discuss the Blu-ray release of his 1990 film Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III. Recently dropped on 2/13, the movie has undergone the white-glove treatment, and he was all-too-happy to bring us back to when the film was being shot…and eventually diced thanks to the MPAA – so settle in, grab a cold slice of bloody meat, read on and enjoy!

DC: First off – congrats on seeing the film get the treatment it deserves on Blu-ray – you excited about it?

JB: Yeah, I’m really happy that it’s coming out on Blu-ray, especially since so many people bitch and moan about the death of physical media, and this thing made the cut, and it’s great for people to be able to see probably the best-looking version of it since we saw it in the lab back in 1989.

DC: Take us back to when you’d first gotten the news that you were tabbed to be the man to direct the third installment in this franchise – what was your first order of business?

JB: It was fairly condensed pre-production for me, and there really wasn’t a whole lot of time to think about the import or the greatness of it – it was basically just roll up your sleeves and go. It was a bit disappointing because a lot of times in pre-production you have the opportunity to dream what could be – casting had already been done, but certain decisions hadn’t been made yet. A very condensed pre-production, but exciting as hell, for sure! (laughs)

DC: R.A. Mihailoff in the role of Leatherface – was it the decision from the get-go to have him play the lead role?

JB: No – I totally had someone else in mind, even though R.A. had done a role in my student film about 7 years earlier, and we’d kept in touch, and I’d felt strongly because I’d gotten to know him a bit that Gunnar Hansen should have come back and played Leatherface, which would have given a bit more legitimacy to this third movie. He and I talked, and he had some issues with the direction that it was going – he really wanted to be involved, and it ended up boiling down to a financial thing, and it wasn’t outrageous at all – it wasn’t like he asked for the moon, but the problem was that New Line refused to pay it, categorically. I think the line producer at the time was more adamant about it than anyone, and Mike DeLuca was one of the executives on the movie, and he was really the guy that was running this, in a creative sense. I made my case for Gunner to both he and the line producer, and they flat out refused to pay him what he was asking, so after that was a done “no deal” I decided that R.A would be the right guy to step into the role. Since New Line was the arbiter of the film, he had to come in and audition for the part, and he impressed everyone and got the part. He did an absolutely fantastic job – such a joy to work with, and he was completely enthusiastic about everything.

DC: Let’s talk about Viggo Mortenson, and with this being one of his earliest roles – did you know you had something special with this guy on your set?

JB: Here’s the thing – you knew he was talented, and I’d seen him in the movie Prison way back in the early stages of development and was very impressed with him, and he was one of those guys that I think we were really lucky to get him on board with us. I really believe that The Indian Runner with he and directed by Sean Penn was the movie that truly made people stand up and notice his work. Every person in this cast was one hundred percent into this film and jumped in no questions asked when it was time to roll around in the body pits.

DC: It’s no secret about the amount of shit that the MPAA put you through in order to get this film released – can you expound on that for a minute?

JB: At the time, I believe it was a record amount of times we had to go back to the MPAA after re-cutting the film – I think it was 11 times that we went back. What a lot of people don’t realize is after Bob Shaye (President of New Line) had come into the editing room and he thought that it was very disturbing, and cut out some stuff himself. He thought that it would have been banned in every country, and it was banned in a lot of countries but so were the previous two. It was definitely on the verge of being emasculated before even being submitted to the MPAA, and I would have thought just a few adjustments here and there – maybe a couple of times to go back…but eleven? It was front-page news in the trade papers then, and I think that the overall tone of the film was looked at as being nasty. The previous film (Chainsaw 2) had actually gone out unrated, and with the first film being so notorious, I think it was a combination of all of that, and now even the most unrated version of this would be rated R – that’s how far the pendulum has swung in the other direction.

DC: Looking back at the film after all this time – what would be one thing that you’d change about the movie?

JB: Oh god – any film director worth his salt would look back at any of their films and want to change stuff up, and with this being 28 years old, I can look back and say “oh yeah, I’d change this, this and this!” You grow and learn over the course of your time directing, and this was my third movie and my first without producers that I had known, so the main thing that I’d do today would be to make it a bit more politically savvy. I had always thought that they wanted me to put my vision on this film, and that wasn’t necessarily the case, so maybe I’d navigate those political waters a little better.

DC: Last thing, Jeff – what’s keeping you busy these days? Any projects to speak of?

JB: Oh yeah, I’ve got a couple of movies that I’m working on – I’m prepping a horror movie right now, and then I’ve got a comedy film that I’m doing after that. You haven’t heard the last of me! I’ve had a real up and down (mostly down) career, but I still love it – it’s what I love to do, and it’s still great that after 28 years people still want to talk about this movie, and are still watching it – that’s the greatest gift you can get, and I thank everyone that’s seen it and talked about it over all these years.

BUY IT NOW!

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